According to a poll released today, forty-nine percent of likely American voters believe neither political party in Washington is representing the American people. Does this mean America may be ready for Radical Centrism?
Radical centrism would offer a clear philosophical alternative to the major political philosophies that was compelling enough to be embraced by a plurality of American citizens. The platform would contain some ideas that are embraced by Progressives and Conservatives but it would also offer new ideas that transcend the ideas commonly expressed by those two groups. The Radical Centrist platform would not offer a middle ground. It would be a more original and ideologically consistent alternative to the establishment positions that are sucking up most of the oxygen today.
Independent Americans may be seeking such an alternative. They see the primary political parties as intransigent, impractical, and mercenary. They don’t like either choice.
Americans do not seem to be happy with any of the current Presidential Candidate choices available to them. President Obama has approval ratings in the forty percent range in several national polls. A “generic” Republican candidate enjoys a modest lead over President Obama in several recent polls. However, in head to head match-ups among likely voters, President Obama is outperforming all of the announced Republican Presidential candidates. Most voters do not approve of President Obama’s performance but they do not think any of the Republican options will do any better. Americans seem dissatisfied with Democrat and Republican politicians generally. Consequently, this may be the time for a spokesperson to emerge for Radical Centrism who would challenge the conservative and liberal establishments that have put their chosen political parties in a stranglehold.
Radical Centrism could find its voice in common sense New Hampshire, a place that prides itself on independent thinking. New Hampshire citizens are well educated, free-thinking, and iconoclastic. They tend to be optimistic, patriotic, and libertarian. If Radical Centrism were to gain momentum in America it could start in a place like New Hampshire.
One candidate who could trandscend the Republican – Democrat divide in New Hampshire is Congressman Ron Paul, a libertarian thinker who has a strong organization in New Hampshire and nationally. While Congressman Paul is running for President as a Republican, his Radical Centrism is evidenced by his unique opposition to both the welfare and warfare states and his plan to reign in and eventually abolish the Federal Reserve, a position that more and more Americans are starting to embrace.
Contrary to the other Republican candidates in the race, Paul’s campaign is independent, populist, and energized. Paul is a respectable solid third at thirteen percent in the most recent national poll by Gallup, at striking distance from both Rick Perry and Mitt Romney, neither of whom is polling above thirty-five percent in the same poll.
Most Americans are dissatisfied with the direction of the country and they have little faith that politicians in the current political parties will do anything about it. Thus, Americans may be ready for something new.